UNITED24 - Make a charitable donation in support of Ukraine!


Orbital Set To Launch Taurus Rocket On May 20

By: Orbital Sciences Corporation
May 19, 2004

Orbital Sciences Corporation announced today that it is in final preparations to launch its Taurus® space launch vehicle carrying the Republic of China's ROCSAT-2 remote sensing satellite on Thursday, May 20, 2004. The mission will originate from Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB), California. The available launch window extends from 10:47 a.m. to 11:11 a.m. (Pacific time), with a targeted launch time at the opening of the launch window. This schedule is subject to the completion of final preparations and testing, as well as acceptable weather conditions at VAFB at the time of the mission.

Onboard Orbital's four-stage ground-launched Taurus rocket will be the ROCSAT-2 spacecraft, built for Taiwan's National Space Program Office (NSPO) by EADS/Astrium. ROCSAT-2 is a 750 kg panchromatic and multispectral remote sensing satellite that will observe and monitor the terrestrial and marine environment of Taiwan and surrounding waters. The satellite also carries an instrument to observe lightning in the Earth's upper atmosphere.

On launch day, the Taurus rocket will be prepared for its mission during a four-hour countdown procedure. Following a final launch decision, the vehicle will ignite its first stage rocket motor, lift off and follow a pre-programmed launch sequence controlled by its onboard flight computer. Approximately 14 and a half minutes after liftoff, Taurus will deliver NSPO's ROCSAT-2 spacecraft into a circular parking orbit approximately 725 kilometers above the Earth, inclined at 99.1 degrees to the equator.

Join the GlobalSecurity.org mailing list